Friday, March 5, 2010

CHASING TOFF: 2000 and Thin!

So I finally wrote a column about my blog. Haha. It's one of my last for Young Star... :(

No photo2000 and thin
CHASING TOFF By Christopher De Venecia (The Philippine Star) Updated March 05, 2010 12:00 AM
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Then and now: From an exaggerated weight of 221 pounds, the author, Toff de Venecia is now 198 pounds and plans to drop down to 165. The author lost the weight by going on a diet and doing exercise.
Some people are blessed with fast metabolisms and bodies that are perpetually lean or toned. They can wear whatever they want and can make a shirt from the ukay or a camiso look better and more fashionable than if a fat guy wore Etro or other designer clothes. I believe I am blessed in a lot of ways — just in a manner that is cumbersome and unnerving to the fitness and body-conscious eye. I’ve been struggling with my weight all my life and have seesawed the scale like a lover who engages in a titillating game of hot and cold. One minute I’m as heavy as a whale, and the next, I’m as light as a feather.

Simply put, I’ve always been on the chubbier side. It’s cute and all when you’re like five or six, when you’re caught wearing body-hugging clothes that expose your baby fats, emphasize your man boons, put the spotlight on your back boobs, and ransack your love handles. But the moment you hit puberty, being chubby can become physically and mentally exhausting. It can also dampen your spirit and more alarmingly, f**k up your system and your self-esteem.

Some people make up for being fat by having a lot of personality despite their weight, or by being funny, or by not caring at all about their physical appearances. Others take pride in being defined by their weight, that they wouldn’t be who they are if they weren’t fat because that’s the person his family and friends grew to love. But being on the heavy side seems to have more negative effects on one’s overall wellbeing than positive. After all, if there’s a will, there’s a way. And if the will is virtually nonexistent, there are excuses — tons of them.    

Recently, I decided to stop making excuses and finally start a blog (since that seems to be the “thing” nowadays), chronicling my journey towards “2000 and Thin.” It was a pun that my friend RC coined on Facebook a couple of months back and it has stuck with me ever since. A lot of factors have contributed to this life-changing decision, and weirdly enough, the stars aligned and I am currently 50 days strong into this personal undertaking.

The following circumstances stand:

1) My friend Nicole is always so candid and straightforward with me about having tolose weight. According to her, “nothing tastes as good as skinny.” And she’s right, especially when everyone tells you that you’re losing weight.

2) I joined a Biggest Loser Competition at work and I want to win.

3) My boss keeps dropping hints about how I should lose weight in order to fit into the clothes I am essentially promoting. She makes a valid point.

4) I recently saw Julie and Julia and was so inspired by the movie and how Julie was able to use cooking as a means to catharsis and up her self-esteem.

5) I’m so sick of wearing the same clothes over and over again. My tops are starting to have holes.

6) My brother Ipe who is all the way in New York taking his master’s expressed his concern that I looked extra bloated in my Facebook pictures. Mom threatened to send me to a dietician so I can trim down the fat. Deal breaker.

I’m only 23 years old! I don’t need to be sent to a dietician. That’s like a serious reality check that I’m obese and that I need to do something about my weight. And since our family therapist tells me that I need to keep a journal anyway to aid me in processing my feelings and emotions, I decided, why not combine the two? Keep a journal of everything I eat, the amount of exercise I clock in, my feelings, my adventures, my thoughts, and my weight. The fact that it’s public also gives me the impetus to do better and stay committed to “2000 and Thin.” After all, I’d be considered a fluke or a fraud if I reneged on my personal goals.

In 50 days’ time, I am proud to say that I have lost 23 pounds — made possible by dieting and constant exercise. I cheat from time to time, and have a rather skewed diet on my hands. I have this tendency to skip meals, which supposedly slows down your metabolism. And lately, I haven’t been in the mood to eat at all. The thought of food just doesn’t excite me anymore. It’s also made me more unstable and emotional, contrary to what I set out to do, and generally lackluster with life. Perhaps, I should find the median.

From an exaggerated weight of 221 pounds, I am now 198 pounds and have made it my mission to drop down to 165. That’s the ideal weight for my height, according to the Body Mass Index (BMI).

The blog also helps me preserve those moments in my life, big or small, that I’d like to reminisce over down the line. Most recently, I’ve been writing about my rollercoaster adventures in 9 Works Theatrical’s Rent: The Musical, my fitness workouts with friends, my cat and mouse game with depression, and my dinner catch-up and catharsis sessions with the many people in my life.

Catch me if you can. And hey, maybe you can start your own “2000 and Thin” journey too. Read up on my weight loss chronicles at Currently at 198 pounds from a whopping 221…

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